How to Get Rid of Eczema

How to Get Rid of Eczema

Eczema is a common skin condition that affects many people in the United States and around the world. A number of people develop the condition as a child, when skin is more sensitive and less conditioned to environmental elements. However, it is possible to develop eczema at any stage in life.

For people who suffer from eczema, rather sporadically or on a regular basis, the symptoms can be embarrassing. When an outbreak occurs, people tend to skip events, cover their arms and legs despite weather, and even avoid time with friends and family. Eczema can be a limit on normal life.

Why You Get Eczema

Understanding how to get rid of eczema is also a lesson in why the skin condition develops in the first place. Eczema is more than dry skin. The condition can materialize in a few different ways or a combination of the following: red, itchy, patchy, peeling, blistered, or crusty skin [1].

While each symptom can result in a degree of itching and inflammation, all are caused by the same source. People get eczema when the skin is deficient in the natural fats and oils that keep skin moisturized [2]. Eczema is not contagious, and therefore is not passed from one person to another. Yet, nearly 15 million Americans have been diagnosed with eczema [3]. Therefore, what explains the development of this very common disease?

This lack of natural oil production is partly genetic. If your blood related family members have or had eczema you are more prone to develop it [4]. It seems to be the case that if one family member has eczema, another will also have the condition. However, genetics alone do not explain why our skin loses its natural moisture protection, and can’t answer how to get rid of eczema.

Extreme temperatures can also cause the dry, itchy skin of eczema. This applies to both heat and cold. Therefore, those who regularly suffer from eczema usually find that it is worse in the dead of winter or height of summer [1]. As well, people who have Celiac disease are much more likely to develop eczema; 3 times more likely, in fact [3]. Finally, distress. A number of studies have linked eczema outbreaks with high stress.

For some people eczema dissipates during adult life, or the symptoms become less severe than during youth. However, other people battle eczema their entire lives and it becomes essential to learn how to get rid of eczema. Dermatologists and researchers have not found a cure for eczema [3]. Instead, there are many theories on how to contain and treat the flare-ups common to the condition.

Does Diet Affect Eczema?

One interesting suggestion for clearing eczema is consuming more turmeric. Turmeric is the primary spice used in curry, particularly those made in Southeast Asian cultures. It has also been shown to clear or treat a number of different skin diseases and conditions, eczema included [5]. You will not want to consume turmeric alone, so mix up dinner with a delicious curry, add it to vegetables, or even just over rice. A diet rich in vitamin C can also treat eczema.

While you are adding turmeric to your diet, eliminate dairy products. There are a number of heath issues that can be treated by eliminating certain products or substances from your diet. To lessen the symptoms of eczema, try removing dairy [6]. Dairy is difficult to digest, and the theory for researchers is eliminating cheese, milk, and butter, will also prevent some skin issues that result from the digestive irritation [6]. While there is still some skepticism around the connection between dairy and eczema, it is a worthwhile remedy for how to get rid of eczema before seeing a doctor or spending serious money to try and treat eczema.

Topical Solutions to Eczema

If you are experiencing an eczema rash can be treated with some topical ointments and natural products. How to get rid of eczema starts with adding moisture to the skin. If this is a first time eczema outbreak or it is less severe simply start with a moisturizer after showering. It is easy to find over-the-counter creams and lotions for very dry skin; also look for one that is made for sensitive skin [4].

If a simple lotion is not clearing up the dry and itchy patch of skin or the flaking skin becomes worse, look for an emollient. This is essentially a daily moisturizer on steroids. An emollient is able to pull water from the atmosphere into the skin and trap the moisture that is naturally produced by the body [4].

A less mainstream suggestion for topical treatments is applying cooking or vegetable shortening. Vegetable shortening is filled with natural moisturizers and fats. If you apply shortening to the affected area, this should be done as a spot treatment, cover the shortening with plastic wrap and let it sit [5]. The theory behind this method of treatment is that the moisture from the vegetable shortening seeps into the skin and provides an intense amount of moisture to the very dry skin.

Two other natural remedies for how to get rid of eczema include apple vinegar and chamomile oil. Like vegetable oil, both of these treatments should be used just on parts of the skin irritated or red from eczema. Chamomile oil, when applied to dry or irritated skin, has a soothing effect and it can increase the overall moisture on a specific patch of skin [1]. Similarly, apple vinegar also calms and pacifies irritated skin. It is best for inflammation, but if the skin is broken and exposing deeper layers, this is not the best method [5].

Hygiene Habits and Eczema

Treating eczema is also about cutting out some activities or products from your grooming or beauty routine. At its core, eczema is intensely dry and inadequately moisturized skin, therefore to determine how to get rid of eczema you need to eliminate the activities that dry skin out more. This, unfortunately, includes daily bathing.

However, it is an absurd and smelly recommendation to eliminate showers from your routine. Therefore, dermatologists suggest some simple changes for how to get rid of eczema. Make your showers shorter and do not use water that is too hot or too cold [3]. Instead, bathe with lukewarm water, and put any soaps or cleansers that contain retinol, glycolic, or salicylic acids in the cabinet for awhile, as these harsh ingredients will only irritate the dry skin more [7]. Opt for a soap that is light, basic, and made to moisturize.

 

References:

[1] http://thefacialfitness.com/get-rid-of-eczema-naturally/

[2] http://everydayroots.com/eczema-remedies

[3] http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/07/29/understanding-eczema-to-treat-it/?_r=0

[4] http://www.menshealth.com/grooming/get-rid-eczema

[5] http://www.rd.com/health/conditions/home-remedies-for-eczema-psoriasis/

[6] http://www.shape.com/lifestyle/beauty-style/natural-eczema-remedies-you-havent-tried-yet

[7] http://www.womenshealthmag.com/beauty/treating-eczema

Anthony Alayon
 

Anthony Alayon is a Certified Personal Trainer & Certified Sports Nutritionist with the ISSA. He’s written for Natural Muscle Magazine, Bliss Magazine, Bodybuilding.com, About.com (A New York Times Company), and several other popular fitness websites. He’s taught thousands how to eat better, and build the physique they could only dream of (including numerous pro athletes). Today, he’s here to share his knowledge and experience with you!

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